Title: Practice Makes Perfect (Housemates: Book Three)
Author: Jay Northcote
Length: 54k Words
Category: Contemporary Romance
At a Glance: Practice Makes Perfect is another thoroughly charming addition to the Housemates series.
Reviewed By: Lisa
Blurb: Getting experience with the guy next door seems like a great idea—until the lines blur.
Dev, a geeky first year physics student, has zero sexual experience and he’s determined to change that ASAP. After a bad time in halls of residence, he’s starting the summer term with different housemates and a new plan of action.
Ewan lives in the house next door to Dev. He’s young, free and single, and isn’t looking to change that anytime soon. When awkward circumstances throw them together, Ewan offers to help Dev out in the bedroom in return for maths tutoring, and Dev jumps at the chance.
They work their way through Dev’s sex-to-do list, but what starts as a perfect no-strings arrangement gets more complicated as their feelings for each other begin to grow. If they’re going to turn their lessons in lovemaking into something more permanent, they need to work out how they feel about each other—before they get to the end of Dev’s list.
Review: I’ve read all the books in the Housemates series now, and have been so completely smitten with all the couples introduced so far. I wasn’t sure anyone could give Mac and Jez from Helping Hand or Rupert and Josh from Like a Lover a run for their money, but Dev and Ewan didn’t short change me in the slightest bit.
The formula for this installment of the series starts with the meet-cute and ends in a budding romance, but in between that we see two young men strike a bargain that it doesn’t take much brain power to decipher is going to be complicated. Ewan needs help with math, which Dev is good at. Dev needs help with sex, which Ewan is good at. It’s the perfect marriage of experience, no strings attached, right? Well, sure…until things get mucked up by feelings that weren’t supposed to enter the equation.
Jay Northcote does such a great job of establishing these characters as college aged students, so of course they’re not going to know all the right things to say or do. Dev and Ewan really are feeling their way around blindly here, so when they start feeling conflicted, their actions and reactions make perfect sense based on their age and experience. And that’s where the angsty part of the plot comes into play—not knowing what to do when the end comes, or how to handle all the ridiculous chemistry between them. They definitely have that in abundance.
True to Jay Northcote form, Practice Makes Perfect is a lovely romance, a story with a few complications told in an uncomplicated way. I love the way the issue between Dev and Ewan was resolved—it’s a logical misunderstanding that’s not drawn out at all but is handled in the way only Dev would handle it. I loved his practical and methodical approach to everything. And Ewan—he didn’t stand a chance against Dev’s guileless sexiness, really. These guys are so sweet together, they just fit, and it was great to see the other couples from the series play their parts as good guys to have in their corner.
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